Skip to main content
Unit of study_

GOVT3993: Power

Power is the essential concept of political science, which is the systematic study of politics. Bertrand Russell, perhaps the greatest mind of the 20th Century, said power is the central concept of all the social sciences. Students explore this concept in different parts of political science and survey some debates on power, assessing the advantages and disadvantages of concepts of power. There are three themes in this unit. The first is the distribution of power in society. The second is power in comparative politics and the third is power in international relations. The emphasis is on the nature, sources and use of power.

Code GOVT3993
Academic unit Government and International Relations
Credit points 6
12 credit points at 2000 level in Politics or 12 credit points at 2000 level in International Relations or 12 senior credit points from Government and International Relations

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. critically evaluate and apply a range of theories, concepts, assumptions and arguments about power
  • LO2. work constructively and creatively with others to solve power-related problems
  • LO3. express complex ideas about political power clearly and succinctly
  • LO4. communicate ideas about power via new technologies
  • LO5. reflect critically on your current and future role in exercising and responding to power in local, national and international contexts.